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FCC Proposes $2.3 Million Fine for Pirate Station in Queens

Last week, the FCC issued a Notice of Apparent Liability against a long-time pirate radio station operating in Queens.

This is the largest proposed fine proposed under the PIRATE Act. According to the FCC’s Notice of Apparent Liability:

“[T]he Commission proposed the maximum penalty allowable under the PIRATE Act, $2,316,034, against César Ayora and Luis Angel Ayora for operating a pirate radio station known as “Radio Impacto 2” in Queens, NY. The Commission previously issued Luis Angel Ayora a $20,000 forfeiture in 2015, which he did not pay. In 2016, the U.S. Marshals Service executed a warrant in rem and seized the Ayoras’ broadcasting equipment. As part of their PIRATE Act investigation, FCC Enforcement Bureau Agents found scores of apparent violations between March and September 2022, including multiple weekly on-air radio programs. The Ayoras even advertised their pirate radio station for no less than 25 weeks, and continue to operate their unauthorized station to date.”

As previously noted, the FCC has increased enforcement against illegal pirate radio operators across the country. Enforcement efforts were delayed due to COVID-19 and budget constraints. We are delighted that the FCC has started to move forward with enforcing the PIRATE Act.

You can see the FCC’s decision here.



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